Hints and Tips

I’ve decided to make a central area for some hints and tips we’ve picked up on our journey through CM9798. On this page you’ll find top players, the best formations and some other tips.


We trialled some formations in the summer of 2017, my absolute favourite was the 2-3-1-2-2 which I use in the Aberdeen save. You’ll notice the constant in a lot of these formations is playing with a direct style, which is also the case in the 4-2-3-1 which was also very good.

We had unprecedented success using a narrow 4-4-2 diamond with Aston Villa but to date that seems like a fluke. If you want to keep it simple, my go to formation is always 5-3-2, it’s probably the most balanced formation and was in style at the time the game was released. Your midfielder in the centre of the three will have a small forward run, if you’re using the formations as listed on the tactics screen, and my advice for that player is that you have somebody with good heading. I have no idea why but it works.


The mistake I made in the Community XI was including the top players like Ronaldo and Zidane. We all know they are good. Here’s my selection of must have bargains

John Curtis (CB, £2m) – Starts in Man Utd’s youth team but can never get a game. You’ll possibly be able to loan him in season one and buy him shortly thereafter. Depending on his contract he may be much cheaper than £2m but he will go on to captain England.

Bjorn Heidenstrom (CB/CM, £50k)Friend of the blog Bjorn Heidenstrom starts at Leyton Orient and his value will fluctuate depending on his contract situation, but you can usually pick him cheaply in the first season. He’s a must have if you’re in the lower leagues but will also do a job at a higher level. Takes a mean penalty.

Erik Nevland (CF, £1m) – Goal machine! Basically any of Man Utd’s youth players are worth snapping up. Nevland will be available after season one.

Andrew Duncan (CB, Free) – Discarded by Man Utd in the off season, Duncan is a promising centre half who can be picked up for free. Definitely one for the lower leagues but can certainly improve.

Anthony Betterton (GK, Free) – A freebie keeper who will do a good job for you, again in the lower leagues though.

Andrew Mainwaring (CF, £5k) – Plays for ‘Non-League’ and can be signed for £5k. Will improve with game time and did a decent job for me at Barnsley in the Premier League once, so provided you aren’t a European giant you don’t need to panic (sorry).

Graeme Tomlinson (CF, Free) – Another discarded by Man Utd and available for free. Sign him, play him, enjoy him. Similar to Mainwaring, certainly one for the lower leagues and will do a job in the higher tiers.

Tommy Svindal Larsen (CM, £500k) – I think he was dumbed down a bit in the patch but this has been unproven. Cult hero, icon. Can also play out on the left, if you are Souness.

See Also: Dida (GK), Evar Moas (CB), Kieron Dyer (D/M RL), Marcus Purk (CF), Phil Mulryne (AM LC), Martin Lauchlan (DM LC), Alex Martin (CF), Billy MacDonald (DMC), John Ritchie (CF), Robert Dunn (M/FC), Neil Alexander (GK), everybody’s favourite Icelandic re-gen (DM/FC – wait one season, let the real one retire then pounce).

General Tips

Data Editor – A lot of fun can be had with the data editor, not in a cheating sense but in terms of looking at potential abilities and re-adding old players (Cantona, Lineker). I wrote a guide to the data editor here

Manage a National Team – It’s actually possible to manage any national team and not just those represented by the leagues you can play as. I wrote a comprehensive guide for that here

Big Club Release – We’ve all fallen victim to the big club release clause, but you can get past it by listing your players with the clause for loan. You’ll have to do this straight away or the board will veto it once they become important. Might not work forever but you’ll end up with well over the asking price rather than the tribunal fee.

Re-gens – Find an old player and bid for them on July 15th before the game updates. If the player retires, your bid will carry over to the re-gen. Some re-gens are easier to find than others, best way to do that is to look at young players in a certain position of a certain nationality. For example, the likes of Chilavert’s re-gen will be easy to find as there aren’t loads of young Paraguayan goalkeepers, or Luis Enrique’s because there won’t be many outfield players who can play every outfield position. Players on your shortlist never retire.

Greatest Team

The Community XI (below) was looking a little bit dated, so in October 2018 we ran a series of polls to find the Greatest CM9798 Team. Here it is or you can follow the link to see all of the nominees:

Community XI

Back when the blog first started in 2015, I asked you all to nominate your ultimate players and then we had a vote on it. After 2 months of voting and nominating, here is the team you’ve selected. The nominations and results are below:


[15/6/2015] Click here for the striking options – You voted Ronaldo (25%) and Ibrahima Bakayoko (22%) as your front two.

[1/6/2015] Click here to have a look at the central midfielders – You picked Zinedine Zidane (24%) and Bjorn Heidenstrom (15%) as your midfield pairing.

[25/5/2015] Click here to check out the left sided midfielders – 47% of you went for Rivaldo

[18/5/2015] Click here for right sided midfielder options – 38% of you chose Luis Figo.

[11/5/2015] Click here to see the centre back category – you voted Mark Iuliano (38%) and Martin Djetou (15%) as your centre half pairing

[4/5/2015] Click here to review the left back vote – 43% of you picked Paolo Maldini

[27/4/2015] Click here for the right back nominees – Javier Zanetti was your choice with 41% of the votes

[20/4/2015] Click here to see the best goalkeepers CM97/98 has to offer – Mickael Landreau won the spot with 42% of the votes

Cover Photo

92 thoughts on “Hints and Tips

  1. Pingback: Happy Blogday | CM 97/98

  2. Hi Dave, I love your blog and it has inspired me to play cm9798 again. I’m not sure if this is a hint or tip but something interesting I found while managing Sporting Lisbon in portugal. First there is no limit of forign players in the Portuguese league but what is even better is when you play in the champions league Brazilian players aren’t considered forign when playing for a Portuguese team. I’m currently using to try and make my sporting Lisbon team and unstoppable European force filled with Brazilian internationals and maybe the odd Portuguese one too. Finally I’m using the 2-3-1-2-2 which I think is amazing.

  3. Hi everyone,
    I’m wondering what you all think of the ‘tactical wall’ – fact or fiction? (The idea that the game figures your tactics out and suddenly you can’t buy a win).
    I’m in season 3 with Lincoln, was sitting pretty at the top of div 1 in January, only lost once in the league, then the wheels came off. A run of 8 defeats in 10 games has put me 12th!!!
    I’ve had no mad injuries, the only thing I can think of is I bought a youngster from Swansea; he had a ‘big club’ clause and wasn’t happy in div3, perhaps his low morale has tipped the balance in my squad and upset everyone!??

    • This happened to me, won the premier two years in a row with everton, signed a few new (expensive) players then everything turned sour, finished 12th the following season, ended up jumping ship to napoli as nothing seemed to work

  4. Hi David, can you advise in detail how to find regens please? I have no idea how to know if they are regens or not as there are so many players to search through. What technique do you use? Thanks Gary

      • Thanks for the reply Chris. This opens up a whole new dimension to the game. Sadly just lost a saved one which had got up to 05/06 season but it’s totally vanished now. Starting a new one now. Gutted.

  5. Pingback: The CM9798.co.uk Year in Review | CM 97/98

  6. hello friends 🙂
    i have 2 questions
    1) how to make the players morale up ??
    2) sometimes when have international games all my team go and i don’t have players to play in the cup or league what to do ??
    thanks and good day.

  7. “Captaincy issues!”
    Always a common phrase when my brother and I are going head to head on this…as we have done for 21 years!
    A phenomenon which occurs frequently when you have multiple players in your squad capable of leading the team on the field.
    How do you choose the right one?? We’ve ended up selling all other high influence players off in order to stop the run of terrible results, which seems to happen without warning!
    Any assistance greatly received as I have to bin off some gems over the years 🙁

    • Is this why my teams end up self-destructing? Seem to find hidden gems who’ll rise quickly in terms of talent averages, yet the teams’ performances always err towards mediocrity! Recently played as Fiorentina with Batistuta and Edmundo up front (both roughly 180 through 195 in terms of ‘talent’), yet would lose ridiculous games to Vicenza by six goals whilst using a 5-3-2 formation with world class defenders, midfielders and goalkeeper!

      • I sometimes revisit this game, but always must conclude that CM9798 is a mess. Your total domination team suddenly starts losing 2-5 at home to rock bottom sides, injuries decimate your team, for AI teams work permits never expire, your players’ morale is always low, there is no consistency whatsoever. Attributes mean nothing and some of the best players have very average attributes. I never liked this game because it’s badly flawed in many areas, but always thought it held a promise of being a great game if only all these bugs were to be properly addressed.

    • Your Capn must be one of the best in team.
      Total Ability changes all the time, and very fast shifts with Form/Morale.
      Your stars are not really amazed with some 2nd grade that should be on bench?
      It’s a bit lottery sometimes to evaluate the best Capn atm… checking same latest fixtures and how they performed might help.
      Bad choice himself usually performs badly compared to ‘normal’ and your team gets more cards too(performing worse, so late tackles etc)
      It’s possible that you have a few superstars that dont really have Influence, and the ‘potential’ Capns are actually bad choices (been there)
      What I’ve learned, age has no actual effect, Influence just might develop as late as 25th b-day, and younger players are not playing at their best potential by then(usually)

      Just personal observations over the years playing this.
      Don’t blame me, if all goes wrong!

  8. I’ve recently restarted CM97/98 and stumbled on the blog looking for unknown talents I may have missed back in my youth (turns out there’s a lot!). I just wanted to say a huge thank you for the hints, the entertaining read and that regeneration guide!

  9. Have to say a big thank you for the advice on re-gens. Came back to the game after reading some stuff on FT and won the prem within 3 years and runner up to the champions league on the 4th. Won’t list everyone but my front 5 in regens playing a 5 -3-2 7 Figo, 8 Bergkamp, 9 Raul, 10 Shearer and 11 Luis Enrique.given me 10 years winning title and at leas one cup although I tend to lose the league cup. The only thing I cannot seem to do is have ziane and Figo regens in the same side.

  10. Cheat is to start the game, immediately take off your GK and sub him with an outfield player. Means instead of 10 outfielders you get 11. The LB will act as both the GK and LB and always has huge ratings each game. With that advantage it’s possible to win all leagues and cups. I have done this for years. Downsides are the number of times the post set all are struck and the number of opposition GK MOM’s there are. They will also sometimes cheat back by putting their own extra players on specially in the lower leagues. In the main though this cheat has worked for me for nigh on 30 years.

  11. Thanks for an awesome page!

    I do have one question tho.
    When I start a game, sometimes some players are there but missing others.
    Thomas Gravesen from Denmark as an example.

    Is there any way to load in all players when I make a game and not just random ones.


  12. Awesome page, really reignited my love (and hate) for this game
    However I cannot seem to find Tommy Svindal Larsen anywhere!
    Also the games iconic Icelandic midfielder is not retiring at 38!
    Any help please?

    • Have you got the Icelandic legend on your shortlist?
      A lot of the Norwegian players won’t load if you have the English league loaded, too many players!

      • Play the 16MB game and hunt for Tommy or Svindal – don’t hunt for full name.

  13. Great blog! I have a lot of experience playing this game, still have some laptops an pcs with original windows xp and dos in the basement. One thing I have never found a way around is to speed up the game beyond pressing the space key. Sometimes when i exit the game through pressing the windows key, the match runs at higher speed, but only for a short while. Anyone figured out how to increase match speed beyond pressing the space key? For example in the database, data editor etc???

    • Do you play using DS BOX? If so, there should be an option to make the game run faster in general although that’s not something that I tried and do.

      • Thanks for the responsen. I use an old laptop with original Windows xp. Usually the speed of the game increase if I press the Windows button during a gameand then returen to the game. But the speed bump only last for a few seconds. I play the original game loaded from cd in 97. Usually I play 3 others while we have a few on saturday night. Would be Great if anyone have an idea.

      • See my response at the bottom of the comments section. If you install SWOS 9697, there is a trick you can use to incredibly (!) speed things up.

  14. Has anyone ever had a player stuck on loan? Is there a way to fix this? Recalled someone on deadline day, get a message everybweek telling me he’s on his way back yet he never arrives

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  16. HI Dave,thanks for this blog…Ii have played this game in my teen age,nowi am 40 now but i still love it today.
    i have never totally understood how the current ability and potential (the two hidden visible from editor or scout16) work in this game .
    How to search for a good player? How to retain the best players?
    I would like to understand if and when the abilities (showed in the player page description) are updated or remains the same?
    Could you dedicate one page of your blog to this arguments?
    Thanks for this blog and i keep following your CM tales

    • Potential is how good a player can become, 200 is the highest, 150 is about a standard international player for their nation. if a player has -1 then his ability will be randomly created. -1 is given to good young players and depending on how much they play/do well will impact on how high the number gets. Anyone with -1 tends to probably go on to be at least about 150.

      Current ability is how good the player is when the game starts in the first season. Look up maradona, his potential is really high but current ability not great because he is old.

      When potential and ability are the same the player has hit their peak. Ability will reduce as the player gets older and quicker if not playing much.

      Current ability and -1 potential are updated at the end of each season. These stats remain hidden as there is no editor for saved games so you never really know where players are at.

      To find the best players dont always rely on stats, players can have great stats but rubbish ability and potential. Some players from Congo have amazing stats but are rubbish. Use your scouts they tend to pick a few good players out for you if big clubs are interested in players its usually a sign that their potential and/or ability are good. Players called up for international duty also tend to have good potential and ability.regardless of stats. However great stats, great ability and great potential does make for an amazing player I.e Bakayoko

      Knowing who are the great players/diamonds in the rough can be tricky. I have often found stats to be irrelevant, like the Congo guys. The best way to know who the gems are is to play the hell out of the game for several seasons and see who does well.

      Each season players retire and re-enter the game as a youngelster with a new name, if you could make a note of all the old players stats then search for them in the new season and find the new younger versions, you will have an epic team within a few years. Their stats will remain the same excluding stamina, strength, influence and adaptability (may be another) these will be lower and improve with age. These are the only stats that change for any player as players get older stamina and strength reduce Again these stats update at the end of the season.

      Hope that helps!

      If you find players stats change from save to save this will be because in the editor the value is 0, the game will randomly create these each game which give the game some randomness.

  17. HI Guys,
    Excellent site, good to know you share same joy playing this game, do you have some tips also for economic figures or for example stadium size, I just once had a size stadium change during all my years playing this game, is there a way to influence or generate a stadium capacity improvement?

  18. Here are my tips/cheats for those who are still playing the game of games:

    1- You can choose any national team if you edit the teams data before starting your career. To do that, you need to go to the editor (i.e., run cm2ed.exe, edit TMDATA) find the national team you want to manage and add the league abbreviation to the division part (e.g., ISA for Serie A). The national team will show up as a selection in the league you started. I used to play la Liga and Serie A a lot and had Turkey and France national teams just to spice things up.

    2- Rage-qiut: Press * (asterisk) to quit without saving the game.

    3- Negotiations: if there is more than 2 teams interested in your player, press “consider” for the first offer, then “refuse” the second offer. The third club will increase the fee.

    4- Super speed!!: I found this out coincidentally, and haven’t heard from anyone else. So this will be a pretty unique tip! Back in the day, I used to play Sensible world of soccer (SWOS) and CM9798 a lot. So you need to install SWOS9697 for this to work. Go to SWOS9697 career mode, select a Greek team, and before the end of the season, SWOS will crash and will kick you back to the DOS. Now, run CM9798. If you do this on actual DOS environment, you will notice that background matches and your actual game speed is a LOT faster, and even faster when you press space. Warning: you may not be able to read the text during the game. In DOSBOX, the super speed only works during the match (not for the background matches counting on the top right corner as a percentage).


    • If playing with DOS-Box… you can always use ctrl-F9 if you wanna undo your player getting injured, losing a game, get a bad draw with cup opponent.. maybe try if player accepts lower contract offers…
      Who says winning Premier league and all Euro cups is hard?
      Enjoy….. 🙁

  19. Can anything be done about expired work permit players- or is it a case of then setting value at 1k and hoping someone takes? I just paid 400k to release Freddy Leon after 2 years

    • Best thing to do is edit the database. Load up the tmdata and edit every national team.

      Edit the field “EEC Member” box which effects which players have “fgn” after their name 1 means they are European Union members, 0 means they will require a work permit. Change every country to 1 and no more work permits ever required again.

      • Cheers- I think will leave on to add to the challenge but great to know. A Croatian striker I didn’t overly play anyway just did his cruciate for 8 months- so assume he’s done for now too 🙂

        Also love the blog I downloaded just at the start of lockdown and flick in and out but Season 6 with Sunderland and a big champions league quarter final against Inter coming up- as a player tip Ariel Ibagaza absolute box to box legend goals, tackles yellow cards the lot.

  20. Hi guys. I’ve just downloaded the game as per your guide (mainly after all the talk of it on the 90s football podcast). Thrilled to get it working. However, I can’t seem to find the legend that is Tommy svindal larsen. Why might that be?
    The version I downloaded is as per your guide and the file is cm9798v2. Thanks

    • Hi
      It’s a really dull answer but basically most people are familiar with the “out of the box” release where TSL was always there. The download on this site is the patch version, released in early 98 which updates transfers and fixes bugs. For example Asprilla is at Parma and the wages aren’t capped at £50k per week. If you load England or Scotland it uses more of the maximum player count as there are more teams so TSL doesn’t load. If you load England try and load a small league like Portugal to make room for him

  21. Hi All, Can anyone assist with a resolution issue? I run the game on Dosbox. It opens up as a tiny window, at which point I press ‘alt + enter’ to activate full screen mode. This stretches the graphics to fill the screen and looks distorted. It used to run in the traditional resolution with black spaces down either side to make up the rest of the picture, but I can’t seem to get back to this. Any guidance would be very welcome. Thanks, Aidan.

  22. Nice to know that I’m not a total lunatic still playing this…
    I restart everytime there’s real life Championships 😀

    I chose Leyton Orient at random years back and that’s final…
    It’s actually viable for easy promotion even without getting any new players, and have a couple guaranteed players you have to sell for some 4m each if buff up the price(keep them playing), Mark Warren D/LRC and Carl Griffiths SC..
    I also like to buff the prices of David Morrison and Alex Inglethorpe, many Div1 teams want them with hefty price tags….
    Still leaves nice defence, midfield and attack..
    Must have Free players ASAP are Lee Norfolk DM/RC, David Whyte SC and Derek Whyte D LC… They all do well until premier, might manage in Premier as subs, so better sell them with good price early enough… It’s a long list of good free transfers at start…
    D C are easy to get, lot of good free choises(former ManU or other big team drop outs are quite safe bets)
    I’d like to add Sebastian Rozental to snatch later 1st year, usually less than 1m, can become insane and totally good against any Premier goalie…

    But I have some standards…
    1) Players 20yrs+ must have Stamina above 10, that’s bad stamina, but tolerable
    -Can’t know the real Stamina until 20yrs… Usually operating with some 20-22 players, so everyone has to survive 2 games a week…
    2) Injury prone preferably less than 10, 15 or maybe 16 tolerable if worth it… (Michael Owen would just make it in my team with 16)
    -It’s the same reason as with stamina… not too many players
    3) High Strength seems to help playing hard, but fair
    -Once more the same reasons for less cards, plus helps overall in every aspect(not sure how much, but makes a difference)
    – Not absolute requirement, but even bad ass strikers can be lame with low str

    Next requirements need cheating with checking the ‘real’ stats from editor, but once you know their existence, it makes the task of finding new generated star players much more reasonable

    4) Tolerable Dirtyness (obvious)
    -Finding a new potential player, some 30 games on loan should tell a lot, like 30 games 30 disciplinary points… Dirty as hell, if any good, give him a couple matches in your team and sell asap!
    -Any older player, it’s quite easy to check from career stats usually… Take a note if that player is regular team/subs… Playing spare minutes and getting cards is a warning sign(a real fanatic checks the team’s whole season calendar game by game)
    5) High consistency…
    -Makes even the best star players useless every other game if no reliability, getting some 6 while others make 7/8, and then 10 while losing game and others make 6’s
    6) High Big-occasion
    -Especially for offensive players, almost impossible to make goals in euro games, especially if playing Away
    7) High Marking for defenders, maybe some midders
    -D C is pretty bad with low marking, L/R can manage with less if good offensively
    8) Ability (almost forgot, this is the most IMPORTANT)
    -Most of the stats just seem to show bias of the player’s style… and relative to stats’ average… All 20 is about the same as all 10..
    -Ability(potential) is the one and only single number that tells if the player is good or bad
    -Highest potential can be reached if playing well, needs good form and morale ofc, to make even better and then the other way(ugly biz sometimes)
    – 0/0 means ‘tabula rasa’… a player who can be anything
    – 0/-1 means a developing young player(some elder can have -1 too, developers had no clue if they would become the next Pele) with very good potential to become a world class player (Erik Nevland is almost guaranteed to become one of the best if gets practiced early enough, 120/-1 at start)
    -The best player in game is Ronaldo with Ablity 197/200… AND Consistency 18 as the base(The best arguable ofc, but by raw game-technical power)

    • Forgot a couple things…

      With Stats… compare German players with Spain or France for example… They play equally well. but the basic German has stats around 10…

      And in my latest game I made the greatest coup ever!
      Exchanged that Lee Norfolk DM RC to Matthew Reed GK (0/-1), Chris Armstrong SC (140/-1, consistency 16) and David Howells DM C (124/134 cons 20!, with possible playing positions anywhere, but striker or goalie… insanely good player if need to use subs)
      And Tottenham even paid me 1,3m 😀

      • Always a good idea is making money…

        Get Free transfers recommended by your scouts(Re-appoint scouts if promoted btw… Scout in Div3 gives a bit different ‘good’ choices than scout in Premier)
        Make them play on loan to find the best and have them in your team for a few matches… Prices go up pretty fast or can soar skyhigh!
        Some players can be actually just ok or even bad, but randomly generated players can have the ‘reputation’ attribute good while actually hardly div3 players…
        But that’s pretty guaranteed to make a lots of money, up to you which ones you really want to sell and which ones to keep playing!
        Bitter-sweet moments to make the choice 😀
        I have the players I’ve sold in my shortlist, so I can see my wise moves and curse the bad later, but I learn, that’s priceless, eh?

        Arranging a couple friendly matches(Fixtures&results tab-> full season) is good before starting the season and see if the new players fit in asap, but if hoping to have your stadium capacity higher, do NOT arrange Home matches, the stupid board thinks only the average and friendly home game is likely to drop it…
        If planning to play a bit further, you choke on not having enough steady guaranteed income vs your player wages.
        Player sales are not guaranteed to pay all your 50k/week wages
        (If have any doubt, go check Financial Information of ManUtd and wonder how they keep buying 10m and selling 1m, and still have 50k weekly wages)

        Making it into Premier is a lot more annual income, so if even possible, some topnotch striker with hefty wage won’t hurt, best and the hardest way is the get yourself a top-tier goalie… They have these ‘comfortable’ saves, or ‘magnificent’ if some Dwight Yorke makes surprsing super shot.. not giving rebounds and have 7 rating even with no shot stopping in a game…(Yes… super goalie makes easy money, trust me)
        If you are lucky to find a goalie to actually catch most of the attempts… You are able to continue buffing up the prices of ‘never-heards’ for sale 😀 … If doing really good, let them play from the start, but giving spare minutes in ‘good’ team should make easy one or two mil players…

        Ok… I’m not that bad as you think, I choose where I let my players on loan, preferably runners up and the players whose life I have drained away, I like choose the team where they really can make a difference and even future… I spend a lot of time watching how MY old players are doing(the team’s promotion is my success ofc!)

        Making a dream team starting at bottom isn’t so hard, just need some fast success to have your team status get higher to get even a chance to negotiate deals with any good players.
        Then you need some money…
        Right players… more money… repeat

        Season 00-01 end, and a gentleman called Ariel Arnaldo Ortega chose Leyton Orient over Barcelona…

  23. Now I have some questions too…

    I’ve tried to snoop every good in-game manager to figure out ‘What makes the perfect corner kicker’?
    Haven’t found any correlation to stats or anything… Side defenders preferably, the most useless pieces on table 😀
    For example, I got a new generated young player, D/M L, recommended by all 3 scouts 2nd year and he became England international at age 19… giving corner kicks and the stats are more like defender less creative…
    Is there some new devious patch that has given even more new hidden stats? Like specialist at ***? 😀

    And has anyone solved how the Morale works? Give some rest to your star player before Cup match… ‘Boo-hoo, not fair, me do not likes’ and morale drops… subs some player… morale drops… too high asking price, not the 1st team…. terrible job
    And then there are a few in-game managers cheating BIG TIME… I understand Sir Alex to have some advantage… But take a look at Mark Hateley, starts as player-manager of Hull City… No matter what, the whole team has about Superb morale

    • Corner kicks are a bit of mystery. Hers my thoughts though. The the AI managers generally tend to pick fullbacks which I think is because they usually have poor heading and shooting, leaving those with good heading and shooting in and around the box.

      However I tend to pick a player with decent set piece ability, good passing and creativity. Even if its forward, they will still often get rebounds. Seems to work.

      My thoughts on morale.
      I think it is linked to a number of things. New signings always seem.to have high morale. Players consistently playing and playing well tend to have high morale. The more the team does well the more morale goes up. The better the manager the better morale for players also. Mark Hately is a good manager for lower leagues for his stats so does well with a decent team. I’ve never seen him manage a top club though so his stats let him down with big clubs.

      Players getting into international squads also seems to boost morale.

      Low morale seems to be caused by not playing regulary and being poor, being transfered listed, asking price to high or wanting to move to a different club.

      Morale seems to be linked to form also. A few players with low morale dosnt seem to make a huge difference but a lot of the team on low morale does. Same as form.

      As for German stats I agree some of stats look poor, Thomas Helmer has poor stats but is a beast. I think potential and ability have much more to do with performance than stats.

      However I signed Ronaldo in season 3 once and he was shocking, really really bad, 6 goals in 30 games for two seasons. So tactics and the blend of players and abilities seem to play the biggest part.

      • Thanks for the answer, I think I got something new out of it!

        Happy to have some other devoted 9798 players still alive and kicking balls 😀

        I updated my own lil guides already…
        Anything to add?

      • Hateley is doing div1 with Hull atm here and guess what… 21/26, still superb morale and only mid team… with that morale they end up higher to qualifies ofc… and most likely to win there 😀
        That’s also the team hard for me to win… Man Utd, Newcastle, Liverpool? No probs… Hull? That’s a real battle to death

      • Then there’s this stat character, might have some impact being a diva, but usually the best possible players(when the moons are in line)
        They can play 9 rates in a row, and still ‘ok’… Giving a day off usually a disaster, sometimes the answer
        Have seen if low wages affect at all?
        Some wannabe junior called Lampard has a long time contract with 4k salary… just one example, but have to be a bit cheapskate to manage from div3 😀
        And I have about every positive morale booster you’ve mentioned… I hate national matches, 90% of my team come back as drained and rarely any occasion for having rest to 100

      • I think if a club is overachieving that may impact morale, ie Hull are a small club doing well so morale is high. . At the start of season when you see the clubs flash up that’s basically a list in order of how good the club is. So if you were Milan who often come up top of the list but you are lingering around 4th that may make morale lower for some players. reality not hitting expectations.

        I haven’t noticed low wages impacting on Morale. In fact i tend to offer young players long contracts with quite a pay boost, asking for 1k a week, i may get them to sign 8k for 5 years, Within 2 years they could be a top player but never seem to moan about low wages.be careful if you a small club though it will cripple your finances, good for big teams.

        When i am Arsenal I also struggle against some clubs, Wimbledon, Sheff Wednesday. I think its because they play defensive tactics and works against my tactics\team selection. if Hull are playing defensive formation with long passing you need good defenders with heading ability, direct passing quick defenders are needed. However there is also randomness to it I think. Again just lots of small factors at play.

        Rotating the squad is essential towards the business end of the season if you are in all the competitions still. I try to avoid starting anyone less than 92% fit. Better the stamina stat the more they can cope with quick succession of games. I haven’t found much of a problem with morale when dropping players, however i try to rotate more for lesser games so the top players are fit for the big games. Only dropping to the bench will help with keeping morale as they are still in the squad. Check player stats at around 65mins onwards anyone whos condition is really low sub them, their condition will not drop as low for the next game.

    • I think morale is linked to manager style in the manager part of the database. Some managers like Hateley will have a management style that means their teams have high morale, even if they are in the bottom three, and it is why we can’t ever achieve that. The best effort I had was a few seasons with Doncaster where I only signed players who had had above average morale in their previous teams (lots of patient scouting needed) or had high ‘character’ rating on the player editor. I would say it was better than usual – we always seemed to do ok with 10 men – but I could never get more than about half the squad better than ‘ok’.

  24. I had totally forgotten Mgdata base, my bad…

    Manager stats Motivating and Judgement are quite obvious, and you can use that data a lot yourself… and I guess players have that motivating 100 always, and no judgment ability ofc, reputation might be 100, but pretty useless for a player…
    Managers like Courbis, Dalglish, Evans and Wenger for example, have 150+ judgment, so they have the ‘magic’ touch to find good potential superstars, Venables has 200/200, but never gets sacked as Aussie manager, the player base is all foreign and ‘2nd grade’ 🙁

    And figured out why some teams are so frustrating…
    In my game 2008-09 atm, most of the Premier teams use direct, it seems to boost defence A LOT, while offence gets quite a lot chances, very few ‘on goal’ and very often even superb chances end up with no goal…
    So I ended up using very offensive (2-2-2-2-2) formation with passing at start, hopefully making quick goal or 2 before 30mins (I have all roster with national stars, Owen and Denilson often benched, or just attendants), then I switch to ‘direct’ and the game freezes, not too much happening either way 🙂

    Passing style needs more defenders, but good ones can keep your ball possession, and make a lot quality goal scoring chances..
    Direct style keeps your goal well protected, even with super offensive tactics, but even the best of the strikers, given a lot of chances, fail to score a lot more vs passing
    If you know to have a superior team vs opponent, go with the same style… best team should win (most of the time, computer seems to cheat often and make that 1 goal from the only chance they got)
    And vice versa, fighting a giant, direct can freeze them, lucky to get pressure on offensive, quick switch to passing might do the trick 🙂
    Never found long-ball working the best, I should investigate it more…

    And seems that the Fan-base won’t evolve.
    My poor Leyton will never get bigger than 25k stadium :'(
    (not gonna dabble with the editor,.. 250k fans would be fun, like having all foreigners as EEC or the whole team with ability 200 with superb stats.. but would become boring very soon— end of fun)
    I’ve managed to make status of a bigger club though 🙂
    Every player I approach wants to join me, can even offer lower wages (but no real need to get already expensive ones… If I see some bad opponent looking for a tough reinforcement. I might bid and then cancel once get him agreed… evil?)
    I go hunting U21 stars to make the money I don’t get from ticket sales, few games and they show potential or being not so good. Might always put them on loan if in doubt,,, Often there’s players that jump worth a few million, it’s up to you if gonna keep them or pump up your cash resources (every 50k wage is about 3M per year, with bonuses and ‘other costs’)

    I can keep up with some 700-800k salaries total, made a small emergency fund of 100M, if things go bad and no one wants to buy my ‘promising youth’ or the ‘oldies’ that demand outrageous wages 😀

    One more thing… Offer new contract to those 50k’ers after each season, they usually accept. Winning cups makes 50k->55k, and would soar sky high evetually!

    This is a MANAGER game, so money talks, useless player walks 😀

  25. Forgot to add some statistics from 08-09 premier

    2nd-11th place, 54-64pts 20th with 33, 19th with 40pts… GF-GA very close to 1-1 4th-18th.. quick glance seems to be more draws than wins/losses…
    12/20 teams using direct…
    80’s English football coming back! 😀

  26. Good left wingers are hard to find.
    Every poll for the best left winger has either players w/o the ‘anchor’ stat or just not the cream of the top.
    My choices:
    Ziege, P.Neville or Gravesen
    Ziege is awesome offensively, Phil is all-around reliable, Gravesen has potential and stats being insane!

    • Hi. Speaking about good left-backs in the game, i’ll sugest Sergio Ballesteros from Tenerife. Many people don’t know him, he’s a bargain (around 1.5M) and is a reliable player. Everytime i coach spanish teams, players like Ballesteros or Fernandez Sergio (a centre back from Sporting Gijon) are a must.
      Greetings from Portugal.

  27. I only play the patch version, my ultimate XI (4-2-3-1 formation) would be: Landreau; Panucci, Marcio Santos, Sol Campbell, Maldini; Guardiola, Legwinski, Figo, Rivaldo; Ortega; Sonny Anderson
    What do you think about it? What would be your best XI?

  28. How many is ‘too many friendlies’? Filled with hope and optimism after reading that the bug had been fixed in this download, I arranged home matches on every available day to boost revenue – but the game still seems to crash?

  29. Is it possible in data editor to remove the players clause that says that he can be released if a big club wants to sign him . I am playing Blackpool and doing really well but keep loosing my best players

    • Put them up for loan as soon as you get them. That way bids for sale are stopped, only loan requests will be submitted which you can turn down.

  30. Many thanks . The management will not let me put players up for loan that have been playing for a number of seasons. So I was wondering if there was anyway of tweaking the data manager ?

  31. Does anyone know which version of champ manager has the four German leagues and can you get the commentary in german

    • You can, but not a extravagant amount. But whats the reason behind the low morale, if its not money related.

  32. Any thoughts on whether it’s best to play a striker with a forward. Often I wonder if its actually good to have 2 prolific strikers playing together. Do they clash?

  33. I’ve got a quick one.
    My team generally plays better in Passing style. But if I play a Direct style-playing team, I’m never sure whether to stay as Passing, or to ‘match; their Direct style.
    any thoughts from the sages?

  34. Would be grateful if someone could share some insight into how a club reputation can be increased. Took Rochdale to DIV 1 but then kept getting rejected by players and couldn’t improve my squad and ended up getting relegated second season then sacked. Had £15m in the bank from making a profit on players too but couldn’t spend any of it.

    Also, are player attributes absolute or relative to a players overall ability? I.e. is a player in Div 3 with 19 shooting as good at shooting as a player with 19 in a prem squad? I seemed to have players with high stats in the right areas for their positions but wasn’t competitive once we got promoted even though players at other clubs in the league had lower stats.

    • When I try to take a team from the lower leagues to Prem my reputation seems to go up by 1 once a season and only if I win a major trophy. I didn’t track it early on, only once I was in the Prem so not sure how it works for promotions and such. So if I get to the Prem and my rep is 8 I know it will take me 12 years at least to get 20. I managed to get Torquay to 15 before I got bored of the game. Noticed that once I got Torquay to around 15 rep level that finally my team morale was consistently good.

      If my reputation is 8 and I win the treble it will still only go to 9 the next year. I haven’t seen what happens though if you only win the FA Cup, not sure if it still goes up or not or whether you have to win the Prem or the Champions league for it to go up.

      But it’s a grind coming up from the lower leagues. I’ve won the Prem with a lower team and the next season I still cant buy any decent players. You just have to focus on buying wonderkids and keeping them as long as possible with long contracts and getting rid of the big release clause as soon as possible. It’s a never ending wheel, becuase they will want to move to a bigger club and their morale normally gets low so I might be forced to sell them. So I always try to have a replacement racking up experience out on loan ready to step in.

  35. Hello! I’m on my 4th season in Serie A, four games to the end of the season, 2nd on the table 5 points behind Juventus, and now I have a match with Juventus. Well, I would like to say I just can’t win the game, but the reality is: no matter what I do, they score at least 4 goals. I’ve changed tactics, players, tried everything. They always score at least 4 goals. I’ve played them at least 25 times already. They always score at least 4 goals. I would like to say that I’d settle for a draw, or a honourable loss. But they always score at least – at least! – 4 goals. And I’m just 5 points behind them. At the end of the season. In my 4th season. I win literally every other game (I’ve been finishing 2nd for three seasons in a row now, and winning cups), and I’ve probably rage quit twice in total. But I’ve rage-quit after getting 4 goals from Juventus because it looked ridiculous – it’s a home game! – and well, I’ve found out there’s apparently no way to get less than 4 goals from them. I play my ideal formation: I take 4 goals. Change a few players: I take 4 goals. Change ALL the players: I take 4 goals. Change the tactic: I take 4 goals. Mix it up: I take 4 goals. I put everyone in attack: I take 4 goals. I put everyone in defence: I take 4 goals. And get this: 90% of the time, it happens straight away in the first half. Does it make any sense? Any tip? Is there really any influence from tactics/players? Not even randomness? What’s going on??? Thanks 😀

    • What’s your goalie’s form like? If it’s average or below and he isn’t a big match player could be why you are shipping loads of goals.

      I’d switch each player out one by one and replay the match. Sometimes I’ve found out with these match results that are set in stone that there is literally one player causing it, especially if it’s a big match.

  36. Has anyone ever had the message that comes up when you save & quit the game (thank you message from Sports Interactive) come up after playing a match and then have the game close? My game is up to season 13, date is 08/08/2009 in game, and I’ve tried to get passed the first league game of the season (Scottish Prem) three times and it keeps happening. Doubt there is anything I can do to resolve the issue and will have to start a new game but just wondering if it’ll be a problem with the version of the game I’ve downloaded or just a fault with the save? Any insight would be appreciated.

      • I hadn’t thought to look at the dos box screen to see what it said once the game closed. I have managed to get around the issue though. I just went on Manager Holiday to skip past the game I was stuck at and it appears to have worked. We’ll see how long it lasts. Thanks for the swift response!

  37. Help!

    I’ve spent the last 2 seasons languishing between bottom and mid table in the prem with Middlesbrough.

    I have a team full of highly reccommended players.

    I can put 5 goals past the likes of Arsenal and Man Utd, but as soon as I come up against a middle of the road or relegation bound team it’s a 0-0 draw almost every time… Unless I lose ofc!

    Currently playing a 4-3-1-2 formation, which I’ve had reasonable success with previously.

    I just can’t seem to stop the rot! Been playing CM9798 for 25 years, but it seems all the experience has taught me nothing lol.

  38. Hi, I’m hoping someone can help. Why is it when you click the Polish, Georgian, Lithuanian clubs etc is there lines through the players page or just initials of the first name and no sure name?

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